Thank you Mr. and Mrs. P.A Woodward's Foundation

Thanks to the Mr. and Mrs. P.A. Woodward’s Foundation, BC Women’s Hospital has been able to purchase and put into use critically needed infant transport incubator components – a Cross-Vent Ventilator and a Cardio-Respiratory Monitor.

Their $47,002 gift has already helped to save the lives of premature babies who have been transported safely to the lifesaving care at BC Women’s Hospital’s Newborn ICU. BC Women’s Hospital Foundation and the Infant Transport Team are very pleased to share the following story of how your gift has impacted a little girl in Squamish, B.C.

Pictured with the newly purchased equipment are Infant Transport paramedic, Mike Elliot and Jackie Lee-Son, Executive Director at Mr. and Mrs. P.A. Woodward's Foundation

EMILY’S STORY

In late August this year, BC Women’s Infant Transport Team (ITT) was dispatched to Squamish to assess and retrieve a premature baby girl, Emily*. Little Emily had been born nearly two months early, weighing less than 3 and a half pounds, and had been diagnosed with Respiratory Distress Syndrome shortly after she was born.

Respiratory Distress Syndrome is a breathing disorder of premature newborns in which the air sacs (alveoli) in a newborn’s lungs do not remain open because the production of a substance that coats the alveoli (surfactant) is absent or insufficient. The more premature the newborn, the less surfactant is available, and the greater the likelihood that Respiratory Distress Syndrome will develop after birth. Treatment with endotracheal intubation can cause pain and complications, and without treatment, the syndrome may cause brain damage or even death.

When the Team showed up, Emily had already been placed on non-invasive respiratory support at her home hospital, but her oxygen requirements were increasing. For the ambulance journey to BC Women’s, the Team elected to use non-invasive respiratory support with the Cross-Vent Ventilator.

Often babies in respiratory distress require an invasive artificial breathing tube (intubation) to keep the lungs open, but in this case intubation was avoided because the Cross-Vent was capable of providing the gentler option of continuous positive airway pressure (C-PAP) ventilation. With the older model of transport ventilator, this non-invasive method would not have been an option.

Emily was transported safely to BC Women’s Hospital’s Newborn ICU where she was then transferred seamlessly from the ITT to the level 3+ neonatal care offered at BC Women’s. Within 12 hours Emily was able to breathe on her own, her early respiratory distress resolved thanks to state-of-the-art technology and a world class team of experts.

We'd like to extend a deep and heartfelt thank you to the Mr. and Mrs. P.A. Woodward’s Foundation for their support of this neonatal transport equipment which is literally saving the lives of babies from across the province.